Nov 6, 2012

The Winter Rose by Jennifer Donnelly

The Winter Rose
The Winter Rose (The Tea Rose, #2)Author:  Jennifer Donnelly
Publisher:  Harper Collins
Publication Date:  November 30th 2006
Series: 2nd Book in The Tea Rose Trilogy
Ratings:  3.5 out of 5

From Goodreads:

It has been twelve years since a dark, murderous figure stalked the alleys and courts of Whitechapel.  And yet, in the summer of 1900, East London is still poor, still brutal, still a shadow city to its western twin.  Among the reformers is an idealistic young woman named India Selwyn-Jones, recently graduated from  medical school.  With the help of her influential fiance--Freddie Lytton, an up-and-coming Liberal MP--she works to shut down the area's opium dens that destroy both body and soul.  Her selfless activities better her patients' lives and bring her immense gratification, but unfortunately, they also bring her into direct conflict with East London's ruling crime lord--Sid Malone.  India is not good for business and at first, Malone wants her out.  But against all odds, India and Sid fall in love.  Different in nearly every way, they share one thing in common--they're both wounded souls.  Their love impossible and they know it, yet they cling to it desperately.  Lytton, India's fiance, will stop at nothing to marry India and gain her family's fortune.


The Winter Rose is the second book in the Tea Rose trilogy, and follows Charles Finnegan.  Charles becomes Sid Malone, a notorious crime lord, he separates himself completely from his siblings, Fiona and Seamus.  I enjoyed The Tea Rose a bit more, but still thought the Winter Rose was a good followup.

Charlie aka Sid Malone is a really great character.  He's flawed and real.  He's definitely scarred by what happened to his family, which we learn about in book one.  Sid is a crime lord but one that helps the poor people of Whitechapel, almost like Robin Hood. He's build walls around his heart to make it easier to be Sid Malone, and refuses to acknowledge Fiona.  Fiona wants Charlie, and he left him a long time ago.  Fiona and Joe, from the Tea Rose are also a big part of the Winter Rose, and even Seamus joins in the second half of The Winter Rose.

One of the great things about The Tea Rose is the romance between Fiona and Joe, so naturally I was expecting to love the romance between Sid and India, but it actually didn't do it for me much.  Sid was great, my problem lies with India.  India is too damn perfect.  I seriously can't stand characters that are goody two shoes, she's smart, brave, independent and loved by all.  *roll eyes* Then all of a sudden she starts making stupid decisions in the second half of the book that annoy me.  But I did enjoy her interactions with her friend Ella.

First half of the book is good, then it starts going downhill a bit in the second half.  Seamus comes into play basically to set up the third book that will be about him, and I found those parts boring, so I will not be reading the third book.

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